He Who Keeps Me Company – 54/365, BlackBerry Shots, Minneapolis,
Minnesota, February 2010, photo © 2010 by QuoinMonkey. All rights
It’s March 1st, 2010. Sixty days and nights have passed since I began the BlackBerry 365 Project. Day 54 landed on this shot of Mr. Stripeypants keeping me company on a less than perfect day. I was reading Mary Karr’s memoir, Lit. He was taking a nap beside me, simply being himself. I felt like I really saw him.
At first glance, it doesn’t seem like a big commitment — taking a new photo each day and posting it in a public forum. I had been exploring taking photographs with the BlackBerry since last October. It was so much fun, I decided to turn it into a practice. That’s when the work began.
Pushing through days when I am under the weather, low energy, or uninspired are the hardest. But once I get the shot posted, I feel like I’ve accomplished a great deal. I know from past practices of writing, mandalas, and haiku, that yearly dedication to a craft can take you a long way. It can also drive you crazy! I thought I’d check in at the 60 day mark and let you know how things are progressing. Here’s what I’ve learned so far from the BlackBerry 365 Project:
- As soon as I make something a practice, resistance kicks in. It’s all Monkey Mind. The trick is to not think too much, to simply keep going. Don’t force the shot, let the image appear.
- Using the camera phone takes the pressure off to snap the perfect photo. It fits in the palm of my hand. I can have fun with it, photograph and post images I might not let myself publish with my Canon.
- Themes appear and reappear in the photographs, just like in my writing. I keep coming back to what I love and have passion about.
- Knowing I have to post a photo at the end of the day changes the way I look at the world. I am awake to all the possibilities. Everything I see is an opportunity.
- Taking BlackBerry photos reminds me of the old days of 60-second Polaroids. I take snapshots of my day, glean ideas for new projects, visit places I want to go back and shoot with the Canon.
There are many photographers and artists who have embarked on yearly projects of daily images. And writers who have daily practices that keep them going through the lean times. I’d love to hear insights from others who are willing to share their experiences. And I’ll check in again along the way.
Going forward, I’ve decided not to post daily images in the red Ravine comments. But I’ll continue to check in on the original post once or twice a month. If you’d like to continue to follow the yearly practice, I’ll still be posting each day in my BlackBerry 365 set on Flickr. And in the Twitter widget on our sidebar. Just click on BlackBerry 365 to take you to Flickr.
-posted on red Ravine, Day 60, Monday, March 1st, 2010